GIVE US THIS DAY OUR DAILY BREAD
He that gives the body, gives the soul too; and He that gives the air, gives bread as well. Thy children, O merciful Giver of gifts, expect every needful thing from Thee.
Who would brighten their faces in the morning if not Thee through Thy light?
Who would watch nightly over their breathing when they sleep if not Thee, the most indefatigable of all watchers?
Where could they sow their daily bread if not upon Thy field? With what could they refresh it if not with Thy dew of the dawn? With what could they vivify it if not with Thy light and Thy air? With what could they test it if not with the mouth Thou formest on them?
By what means should they rejoice and give thanks to Thee when fed, if not by the spirit through which Thou hast inspired the lifeless clay and made of it a miracle, O Thou, most miraculous Artist?
I do not pray to Thee for my bread, but for our bread. Why should I alone have bread if my brothers around me are suffering hunger? It would be better and more just if Thou takest from me such bitter, selfish bread; hunger is sweeter shared with brothers dear. It cannot be Thy wish to have the thanks of one man, and the cursing of hundreds.
Our Father, give us our bread! In order that we may glorify Thee in harmonious chorus, and in order that we may joyfully remember our Heavenly Father.
This day we are praying for this day. This day is a great one; it is the birth of many thousands of living creatures. Thousands of new creatures, which yesterday were not, and which tomorrow will not be, today are rejoicing together under the same sunshine; together with us they crawl upon one of Thy stars, and together with us they call to Thee: our bread!
O great Host! We are Thy guests from morning till evening; we are sitting at Thy table and waiting for Thy bread. No one but Thee has the right to say: my bread. It is Thine.
No one but Thee has any right to tomorrow’s day and tomorrow’s bread but Thee alone, and those of today’s earthly inhabitants whom Thou invitest.
If it is in accordance with Thy will that the end of this day be the dividing line of my life and death, I will bow before Thy holy Will.
If it is Thy Will that tomorrow I may once more be the companion of the great sun, and a guest at Thy table, I will repeat my thanksgiving, as I repeat it steadily day after day.
And I will bow before Thy Will, again and again, as the angels in Heaven do, O Giver of all gifts, material and spiritual!